tv Late Night With Seth Meyers NBC September 6, 2018 12:37am-1:38am PDT
♪ [ cheers and applause ] ♪ >> announcer: from 30 rockefeller plaza in new york, it's "late night with seth meyers." tonight -- cynthia nixon, from "the deuce," actress maggie gyllenhaal, author ingrid rojas contreras, featuring the 8g band with allison miller and pearl. ♪ [ cheers and applause ] ladies and gentlemen, seth mers. [ cheers and applause ] >> seth: good evening. i'm seth meyers. this is "late night." how is everybody doing tonight? [ cheers and applause ] that's great to hear. in that case, let's get to the news. according to journalist bob woodward's new book, when twitter doubled its character limit for tweets from 140 to 280, president trump said it was
a bit of a shame because, quote, "i was the earnest hemingway of 140 characters." [ light laughter ] i don't know if you were the hemingway, but you were definitely the earnest. [ light laughter ] "the new york times" today published an op-ed written by an anonymous senior white house official titled "i am part of the resistance inside the trump administration." okay. i'm going to say it was kellyanne in the situation room with the laptop. [ laughter ] we'll find out soon. [ applause ] going to find out soon. white house chief of staff john kelly released a statement last night denying that he called president trump an idiot. saying, quote, "the idea that i ever called the president an idiot is not true. in fact, it's exactly the opposite." and it is the opposite. he called an idiot the president.
[ light laughter ] in a -- [ cheers and applause ] in a new interview, president trump commented on the protesters who appeared at supreme court justice nominee brett kavanaugh's confirmation hearing yesterday and said, "it's embarrassing for the country," adding, quote, "you don't even know what side the protesters are on." no, you don't know. [ laughter ] everybody else knows exactly what's going on. you're like a guy watching "glory" saying which side do you think's going to win? [ laughter ] in the same interview, president trump claimed that special counsel robert mueller is former fbi director james comey's best friend adding, quote, "i could get you 100 pictures of him and comey hugging and kissing each other." which is a lot more pictures than there are of trump and melania hugging and kissing. [ laughter and applause ] according to a new report, some upscale hotels are now offering cannabis infused room service
items to maximize relaxation for guests or you could just go to any days inn and huff the drapes. [ laughter ] and finally, a fish market in kuwait has been caught attempting to make fish look fresher by sticking fake plastic eyes on them. [ laughter ] hey, it works for me said rudy giuliani. [ laughter ] ladies and gentlemen, we have a great show for you tonight. she is the gubernatorial candidate for the great state of new york, cynthia nixon joins us. [ cheers and applause ] so excited to talk to her. from hbo's "the deuce," maggie gyllenhaal is back on the show. [ cheers and applause ] and her fantastic debut novel "fruit of the drunken tree" is available now, ingrid rojas contreras is joining us to talk about a really wonderful book.
and i'm so excited for that. before we get to all of our guests, white house press secretary sarah huckabee sanders hasn't been holding many press briefings lately. so we decided to hold one of our own right here, right now. that's right, sarah huckabee sanders and the "late night" press corps are here in our studio and ready to go. so without further ado, it's time for the "late night" white house press briefing. ♪ [ cheers and applause ] >> seth: secretary sanders, secretary sanders? secretary sanders? yes, thank you. seth meyers, "late night with seth meyers." secretary sanders, who do you think you'll be working for by this time next year? >> president mike pence. [ light laughter ] >> seth: what's the rarest thing in the entire universe? >> a question that i could answer. [ laughter ] >> seth: where does donald trump see himself in five years? >> prison. [ cheers and applause ] >> seth: i heard -- sarah, i
heard president trump burnt his hand pretty bad the other day. what did he burn it on? >> the bible. [ audience oh's ] >> seth: name someone you would rather have dinner with than ivanka and jarrod? >> every single member of isis. [ laughter and applause ] >> seth: secretary sanders, do you believe in hell? >> that's where we are right now. [ audience oh's ] >> seth: okay, hypothetical. let's say donald trump was exiting air force one and his pants pocket got caught on the railing causing him to trip, which in turn, ripped his pants completely off and jelly beans flew everywhere as he tumbled all the way down the stairs in his tighty whiteys. if that happened, what would be the top story that night on fox news? [ light laughter ] [ audience oh's ] >> seth: i heard president trump is requesting a ham this thanksgiving, why is that? >> he's not happy with turkey.
[ light laughter ] [ applause ] >> seth: let's get serious. what does president trump think is the most romantic thing to do on a first date? >> sign an nda. [ light laughter ] >> seth: what broke the chair in the oval office? >> the full weight of the government. [ light laughter ] >> seth: sarah, some people say you're not cool. you're not hip. i know that's not true. so to prove that you're cool and hip, what is the name of the boy band from the uk that harry styles was in? >> the wrong direction. [ light laughte r] >> seth: how would yoda -- yoda from "star wars" describe the correspondence between the white house and north korea? >> responded to chairman kim's letter the president has. [ laughter ]
>> seth: guess what? >> turkey butt. [ laughter ] >> seth: good one. [ laughter ] what does melania ask for at hotels when traveling with trump? >> single room. [ audience oh's ] >> seth: roseanne barr said she's leaving her home in hawaii to go live in israel for a while. what will this help? >> the well-being of all hawaiians. [ light laughter ] >> seth: what is the core mission of the hanes corporation? >> to brief the american people. [ light laughter ] >> seth: secretary sanders, i have a policy question. can vampires enter any home or do they have to wait to be invited in? >> i would refer you to rudy giuliani for all questions on that matter. >> seth: well, looks like we're out of time. so on behalf of the rest of the press corps, have a great night. we'll be back with cynthia nixon, everyone.
over there. [ cheers and applause ] also very excited this week's drummer right here in new york city. she's one of our favorites, the new album from her band "science fair" is available september 21st. allison miller, everybody. give it up for our friend, allison. [ cheers and applause ] also sitting in with us, she is an incredible vocalist who's new album, "heartbreak and canyon revelry" is available now. pearl is here. give it up for pearl as well. [ cheers and applause ] our first guest tonight is an activist and an emmy, grammy, and tony-winning actress you know from "sex and the city." she is running to the next governor of new york. please welcome to the show cynthia nixon, everyone. [ cheers and applause ] ♪ ♪ >> seth: welcome to the show. >> thank you so much.
it's great to be here. >> seth: you are very busy right now. running for governor. takes a lot of time and effort. >> i am. i was in six different cities just this weekend. >> seth: that is a crazy thing to do. >> yes. >> seth: yeah. >> it's a big state. >> seth: yeah, i would say if you ever told anybody you were in six cities in one weekend, they would just assume you were running for governor. there's really no other reason to do that. >> or a stand up comedian. >> seth: or a stand up -- that's true. >> one or the other. >> seth: so, one of things you and your opponent governor cuomo are trying to frame yourself as as the person who will most take on donald trump. >> right. >> seth: he obviously has history of donald trump being a new yorker like he is. you have a little history with donald trump as well. when you won an emmy, donald trump gave you your emmy. [ laughter ] >> i look very pained, don't i? >> seth: yeah. it does. you seem very -- >> i look so happy to be receiving an emmy but just wish it was from someone else. [ laughter ] >> seth: yeah. and your other option was simon cowell. you know? [ laughter ]
>> but you see how donald actually doesn't want to let go of the emmy? >> seth: yeah. >> because, you know, he was nominated so many times. >> seth: yeah, he never -- >> and he never had one of his own, and in retrospect, i think that maybe if i had just let him have mine, we wouldn't be in the situation that we're in. [ laughter ] >> seth: yes. we can all look back. [ cheers and applause ] we can all look back. >> but hindsight is always 20/20. >> seth: it doe look like he is saying to you like, "so i think this is something we share. [ laughter ] i'll get it on weekends." you know? >> yes. >> seth: so one of the things you've been talking a lot about in your campaign so far is the influence of money in politics. >> yes. >> seth: obviously, this is something that happens naturally. this is something that happens locally and this is something that happens at the state level. how do you go about getting money out of politics? how do you go about getting this message across to voters? >> right. so i think that obviously the influence of big money, the influence of corporations and politics is nothing new, but i think we've arrived at a moment where corporations have so much power and so much money, and
they're spending it so plentifully on our electeds that there is almost no daylight between the corporate agenda and new york state policy at the moment. and it's, you know, it's no coincidence that andrew cuomo's -- one of the industries that donates the most to him is real estate and we're having a tremendous housing affordability crisis across the state. i think these two facts are very, very linked, and i think it's really important that, for example, in my campaign i'm not accepting a single dime of corporate contributions. >> seth: and have you found -- [ cheers and applause ] >> so that -- so that when i -- when i get to albany, i won't be beholden to my corporate donors because i won't have any. >> seth: that's a very easy solution to the problem of how to not be beholden. >> it is. it is. >> seth: you -- a lot of people giving you credit for even before the election pulling the governor to the left on certain issues. >> yes. >> seth: you have brought up issues. things like single payer.
you mention affordable housing. you talk about -- >> whole host of environmental issues. we've got him to move to the left on. >> seth: you got him to the left. "the new york times" just wrote an endorsement, and obviously, they had to pick a candidate. they gave you a lot of credit in this piece for the issues that you were pulling the governor to the left on. >> right. >> seth: they also said that he had brought a degree of corruption to albany, and yet in the end they endorsed him despite making all the points because he would be more likely to be able to implement things due to his experience. what was it like reading that? >> i'll tell you, effectively said, right. we have a governor whose administration has been rife with corruption and if anything the last four years his administration has outdone itself. they listed all the things that he hasn't accomplished, and they effectively said, "we have an incredibly dysfunctional corrupt cuomo administration. but he's our andrew cuomo and we think the next four years are going to be entirely different.
let's endorse him." >> seth: that might -- i mean because as you read it, it seemed like they were gonna definitely endorse you, and then at the end they didn't. were you like, "wow, that was a real twist at the end there?" [ laughter ] >> you know, this is -- this is an insurgent campaign. this is a people powered campaign, and i think that so many people in the establishment are not grasping the moment that we're in and are not grasping -- with donald trump in the white house, it's a really terrible moment for our country. but i think what voters are trying to say to the democratic establishment and are saying it in volumes when you look at the victory, iana presley last night in massachusetts. >> seth: mm-hmm. >> if you look at andrew gillam last week in florida, these are -- alexandria ocasio-cortez. these are people who were not predicted to win who were down by 30 points in some cases and have marched on to victory
because voters understand something the democratic party leadership doesn't seem to which is that with donald trump in the white house, we actually have not only a possibility but we have an obligation to elect leaders who will bring real progressive change. whether you're talking about single payer health care, whether you're talking about universal rent regulation, whether you're talking about new york becoming a leader in renewable energy. we have to elect more democrats this year but we also have to elect better democrats. >> seth: well, i want to ask about this because you know, obviously if you're running against a republican right now they would probably be attacking your lack of experience, but you're in this situation where even progressives who like your ideas are concerned about it. how do you address this fact that you aren't coming from a political background? especially at a time where someone's in the white house who didn't have a lot of experience and it looks like it's not going great. [ light laughter ] >> well, but what i want to say is -- is -- is donald trump is first and foremost a real estate developer. right?
who ran to give himself and people in his tax bracket a huge income tax break. i mean, i'm somebody who grew up, the daughter of a single mother in a five flight one bedroom walkup. somebody who has spent the last 17 years and used my celebrity new york's public schools, and i think that that's the kind of progressive fighter that new york needs leading it right now. we already have a corrupt corporate republican in the white house. we don't need a corrupt corporate democrat opposing him in albany. >> seth: so, i want to get to an issue that we both agree is a -- i think everybody in the city agrees, the subways are -- they're not good. [ laughter ] are you one of -- a thing you've addressed. and obviously, you know, the subway is a life light for a lot of people who have to get to work. this a serious issue. >> the subway is literally what new york city runs on.
>> seth: it's literally what it runs on, and how do you even go about trying to address this issue that not just through -- to be fair, has been deteriorating for years not just due to the cuomo administration. >> yes, but look at what's happened in the last seven years. delays have tripled under andrew cuomo. we've got the worst on time record now of any major transit system in the entire country. >> seth: we did have that pizza wrap. that was a nice moment. [ laughter ] that happened on his watch. there -- was the first governor to have a pizza wrap. >> but, he has watched the steady decline. he's -- he's siphoned off hundreds of millions of dollars for pet projects that have absolutely nothing to do with transportation, and the fact of the matter is like so many of the issues that we face, the problems that we face in new york, we know the solution. but right now we have a governor who doesn't have the political will to make it happen. >> seth: the solution being we need more money put into the subways. >> the solution being we have a really comprehensive plan for how to fix them to replace the
1930s era signals. to replace the trains from the 60s and the 70s. to run cars closer together so that we can get more trains on the system so we're all not jammed in like sardines. but andrew cuomo doesn't want to enact a tax on millionaires because they're some of his biggest donors and he doesn't want to alienate them. and his -- and they're not people who ride the subway. he himself is not someone who rides the subway. he's been on the subway twice since taking office. as somebody who's on the subway every day and knows firsthand how terrible it is and how it's getting worse and worse month by month. this is not something we have a choice about fixing the new york city subway, and this is not something that we can delay fixing. it's only going to get harder and more expensive to fix the longer we wait. >> seth: is it -- has it been disappointing for you or is it what you expected that a lot of establishment democrats, are throwing their support behind governor cuomo? you know, people like joe biden,
and people like hillary clinton are supporting him. is that what you expected or a disappointment? >> this is exactly what we expected. this is a total insurgent campaign. this is a people powered campaign. and this is a campaign that we're talking to people about issues. we're talking to people about things that they care about like legalizing marijuana. i know your audience doesn't care about that issue in particular -- [ cheers and applause ] but we have to legalize marijuana for a lot of reasons. but also because it's a racial justice issue. because people across all ethnicities and races use marijuana at roughly the same rates, but 80% of the arrests are of black and latino people. and it's just the tip of the iceberg of the justice reform that we need to do. we need to stop the overpolicing of communities of color. we have to stop mass incarceration and when we're talking about mass incarceration, we're talking about mass incarceration of people of color. >> seth: and the subway is also mass incarceration. if you've been on it recently.
[ light laughter ] >> at the moment. at the moment it is. >> seth: at the moment it is. it's all very exciting. it's very exciting to you have here both because of the political message that you're pushing forward. also, we were talking backstage, i do want to mention this briefly. i have never seen "sex and the city." my wife made me start watching it this year. >> i'm so sorry. >> seth: we're on season four. >> yes. >> seth: i'm very much enjoying it. >> good. good. >> seth: but what i'm really bothered because i feel like i have a really good impression of steve. >> really? >> seth: yeah. [ light laughter ] but i feel like it's a problem because i feel like the window is closed as far as that being an effective tool. like no one is dying to hear a steve impression right now. [ light laughter ] but i feel like since you're here, i have a unique opportunity to do it. >> i would be so thrilled. >> seth: okay, great. are you ready? >> i wish we -- do we have a brooklyn bridge, you know, photo that we can -- >> seth: this is close enough. >> it's close enough. >> seth: i feel -- yeah, yeah yeah. >> all right. go ahead. all right. okay. >> seth: what's going on with us miranda? [ cheers ] i can't figure out what we're doing. should we get a dog? [ laughter ] >> that's very good. >> seth: thank you.
that means a lot. you made me feel very good. [ cheers and applause ] you just made me feel very good. >> that was beautiful. >> seth: thank you so much for being here. give it up for cynthia nixon, everybody. we'll be right back with maggie gyllenhaal. [ cheers and applause ] ♪ so, you'll be here to help protect my car? state farm will be here. okay, what about here? yup. nice! my screen didn't crack. thank goodness. what about... obviously. here? i don't think so. that makes sense. what about here? here too. awesome. that wasn't my fault. go with the one that's here to help life go right. state farm.
and save $1000 off your complete bathroom remodel ♪ [ cheers and applause ] >> seth: our next guest is an academy award nominated actress. you know from the films "crazy heart" and "the dark knight." she produces and stars in "the deuce," which returns for it's second season sunday night on hbo. let's take a look. >> hey, girl. i saw your photo on the magazines. >> what? the picture they run by the column? >> yeah, in spank. >> you know i don't write that [ bleep ] right? >> they pay you for it, right? >> yeah, baby. they do. >> lori could do that. she could write for, you know, some other rag. how to please your man stuff, right? [ unintelligible ] >> hey, i wanted to let you know there's a dose that's been going around the set. so, you should get yourself checked out. >> dr. callos, anne? goddammit, i hate going to his office. it smells like orange julius. >> no, no i'll come to you. i'll give you a shot just in case. >> seth: please welcome back to the show maggie gyllenhaal, everybody.
[ cheers and applause ] ♪ >> seth: welcome back. >> thank you. >> seth: did you have a good summer? did you get to have time with your children? >> um, yeah. i actually just finished shooting "the deuce" like last week. >> seth: oh, so you didn't have much of a summer at all. >> so -- no, i mean i had a summer -- >> seth: okay. >> and i got to be with my kids, but, you know, i also was working all summer. like this is -- i had like a week off, and everybody got sick and my husband broke his ankle, so. >> seth: oh, no. did he break his ankle in a way that you were angry that he broke his ankle? >> i wasn't. >> seth: okay, that's nice. i feel like -- because we have two young kids now, if i hurt myself in any way, my wife immediately is so mad at me. >> i relate -- i relate to that. i would have preferred that he didn't break his ankle, but my kids are a little older. so, it was a little easier for me. >> seth: okay, gotcha. yeah. this show is about the birth of the porn industry in new york in
the '70s. the last season ended in the early '70s. >> yeah. >> seth: there is a time jump here. >> yep, yep. we ended in '72 and we pick up again in '77. so, there's like a little punk. there's -- everyone is a little freer a little more -- >> seth: there's a new wardrobe. that was a very 1977 wardrobe choice in the clip there. >> yeah. you didn't get to see like the whole thing. the pant suit. there was a fur coat. it was a whole -- yeah. >> seth: and you -- your character is now sort of the end of the first season we saw you becoming -- going from being a sex worker to making porn films and now we're five years in the future, and you are directing porn films. is this -- is it fun to play a character where you get to sort of jump ahead five years and be changed in the arc of your character like that? >> yeah. i know, i had never done anything like this before. i had never done a show that came, you know, i had never done this. >> seth: yeah. >> i've never done the same character twice. >> seth: that's right. 'cause you've never done a second season of a television show. >> no. i did "dawn of a woman" but that was just one. >> seth: yeah. >> so it was wild. yeah, i was like, "oh, i know completely who this is.
i like love candy." and i just sort of flip the switch and i can talk like her and like i'm candy, you know, it's like a completely -- there was an ease to it, and i knew everybody, and she's a director and she's -- i remember this woman who -- who helps me with wardrobe. she is not the designer but she was like on set with me every day. there is one day i had this great white fedora, and i was like, "is this too much, karemia?" and she was like, "no, no. candy's a boss lady." [ laughter ] i was like, "yeah, yeah. okay, i'm going to wear it." >> seth: this is a show from david simon, george peleconos who did "the wire." and much like "the wire" this show has a lot of the same things in it. that it's a very diverse cast, and -- you know, again, it looks at an industry that i think we feel as though we know a lot about and it shows us the side of it we've never seen before. have people in the sex industry, have people in the porn industry reached out to you to talk about how they thought first season was? did it influence what you would try to do in the second season? >> yeah, i think it did.
i think -- i think one thing that's been really important to me and i think also to a lot of people on the show is that, you know, we're making a show about a group of people who really truly have been judged and marginalized. and we want to give them respect and humanity, and i think that at least some of the people who do this work respond to that, and some of them also said, "you know, yes, it is hard work. and some of it is really brutal. but it's also got pleasure and humor in it." and i think we responded to that the second season. there is a lot more humor. it's still got brutality because that's a part of this world. but there is humor too which -- and i think that's what helps make the medicine go down. if you're talking about misogyny, if you're talking about imbalance of power. if you're talking about sex and commerce and the entertainment industry which like all of us are talking about every day, it helps when there is just a little bit of humor to help that go down as i'm sure you know. >> seth: yes.
we try to get little bit every night. just a little bit, but -- [ light laughter ] i assume -- did you ever go back? did you watch -- because again, it's so specific to the era. have you watched the '70s porn films? have you -- >> yes, i have. >> seth: yeah. >> have you? [ laughter ] >> seth: i have. you know-- the funny thing is, you know, you're playing a director who is trying to -- you're bringing a sort of feminine perspective to the film making in the show. >> yeah. >> seth: and it was a time where porn films are trying to be certainly more cinematic -- >> yeah. >> seth: than i feel like they ended up being. >> yeah. >> seth: and so is that -- when you watch them, like what were you -- now it seems creepier. i'm trying to ask this question without being like, "do you have -- do you still have the tapes?" [ laughter ] >> yeah. what is the question, though? i'm not getting the question. >> seth: like, what did you watch -- i don't know. it's like -- [ laughter ] >> you want a couple of recommendations? >> seth: i just like -- here. just like write down like two or three things. [ laughter ] are there things -- i mean i imagine because of the world
you're in, you know, there is a lot of pornographic film sets in the show. there must be props around that also bring -- >> you don't have to be so uncomfortable. it's fine. >> seth: i'm not uncomfortable. i -- look, i have dildos all over my house. [ laughter ] this is totally normal for me. >> that is -- that is though. i mean, that is what "the deuce" was like. i mean, i'm not kidding. there were dildos everywhere. you walk into this set, and it was like -- there's, you know, i mean, yes. there was one funny thing. there was a day we were shooting a scene where like someone from the straight world comes on to one of candy's movie sets, and the point was that this person had to be like immediately shocked by what she saw. and so we were adding a line, me and a couple other writers were trying to figure out what would the line be that would shock this sort of woman who walks in. and we came up with something, and i wrote it on a little piece of paper and put it in my pocket. because i was like, afraid i might forget it, and we did the scene, fine. two weeks later, i'm in the same jacket, and they just like, reach my hand into the jacket, and i was like, "oh, there is something in there. maybe it's a receipt or something." and i open it up and it says, "i
want to see her [ bleep ] glisten, like really glisten." [ laughter ] so that's life on "the deuce." >> seth: yes. be so happy you were the one who put the jacket on the second time. [ laughter ] i think this is maggie's hand writing. you have a film coming out on netflix called, is it "kindergarten teacher?" >> yeah, "the kindergarten teacher." >> seth: a complete change -- a complete change. [ laughter ] >> that's right. >> seth: i mean this really speaks to your range as an actor. >> from porn director to kindergarten teacher. >> seth: this seems like a really interesting project as well. you -- is it that you have -- there's a kindergartener that you think is a genius poet? is that -- >> yeah, i mean, it's -- it's not the kindergarten teacher version. it's the one i would make. >> seth: okay, got it. so it's a little darker than "kindergarten cop." >> yeah, it is. >> it's a psychological thriller. you know, there are some movies i think that are made to, like, make you feel comfortable and
good about the state of the world right now and then there are some that are made to make you want to, like, get up out of your seat and make sure things like, change immediately. and that's what "the kindergarten teacher" is. [ light laughter ] >> seth: that is a good -- i mean if somebody said, "hey, there's this movie called 'the kindergarten teacher.'" you'll be like "oh, that sounds fun." it's like, "it's got maggie gyllenhaal." you're like, "oh, that sounds scary." [ laughter ] it's always so great to see you. thank you so much for being back. give it up for maggie gyllenhaal, everybody. [ cheers and applause ] season two of "the deuce" premieres sunday on hbo. we'll be right back with more "late night." [ cheers and applause ] ♪ introducing 24/7 denim
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is now only $899. plus, 24-month financing on all beds. ends sunday. sleep number proven quality sleep ♪ [ cheers and applause ] >> seth: welcome back, everybody. so we had last week off and i was visiting my parents last weekend. and i was going through some old photos. and there was this lovely one of my grammy and grampy that i really love. >> hey seth. >> seth: yep, sorry. yeah, tom? >> you call your grandparents grammy and grampy? >> seth: yeah. >> very interesting. >> seth: why? what do you call your grandparents, tom? >> well i call mine my meemaw
and peepaw. meemaw kate and peepaw paul. >> seth: meemaw and peepaw. hey, gene, what do you call your grandparents? >> bubby and zadie. >> seth: bubby and zadie. are you jewish, gene? [ laughter ] >> hell no. [ laughter ] >> seth: okay. kenny, what do you call your grandparents? >> on my mom's side or my dad's side? >> seth: mom first. >> gummy and gumpy. >> seth: your dad's side? >> puppin and poppin. [ light laughter ] >> seth: sure a lot of interesting grandparent nicknames. mike zecca, what do you call your grandparents? >> goober and gobbler. >> seth: security guard jim? >> wallace and gromit. [ light laughter ] >> seth: camera man buck? >> goofballs. >> seth: you called your grandparents goofballs, buck? >> well, goofball june and goofball hank, but i was actually really close with my great goofball jedidiah.
he has a pretty interesting story, seth. >> seth: oh, yeah. what's that? >> as a top secret agent for the cia, he played a key role in introducing crack cocaine into the inner city streets of the united states of america. he was a real goofball. [ light laughter ] >> seth: okay. hey paul, what did you call your grandparents? >> they're dead. >> seth: okay. but what did you call them when they were alive? >> they're dead. let it go. >> seth: jesus, paul. eli, syd, marnie, seth jabour, guest vocalist pearl ady, guest drummer allison miller, what do you call your grandparents? >> ping-pong and pick pocket. >> simon and garfunkel. [ laughter ] >> kaylee and chad. >> rum tum hugger and mr. mistoffelees. [ light laughter ] >> i call my grandmom -- ♪ and my grandpa -- ♪ ♪
[ cheers and applause ] >> just grandma and grandpa. [ light laughter ] >> seth: that's boring. >> you're boring. [ light laughter ] >> seth: okay, cue card guy wally, what do you call your grandmother and grandfather? >> well seth, i called my grandmother nana and and my grandfather pop pop. >> seth: oh, well that's pretty. >> pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop. pop, pop, pop, pop, pop. pop, pop, pop, pop, pop. pop, pop, pop. [ laughter ] >> seth: we'll be right back with more "late night." >> pop. pop, pop. [ cheers and applause ] ♪ ♪
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>> seth: welcome. how are you? >> thank you. i'm really good. how are you doing? >> seth: i'm good. i loved your book. this is a story that takes place in colombia during the reign of pablo escobar and it's told from the perspectives of two young women. and this is a very personal story for you. this was inspired a great deal by your own biography. >> yeah, this is true. i grew up in colombia. and i was very lucky to be in a family where my parents came from. they were very poor. very poor families. and i went from living at home to experiencing the two colombias that exist. and the other thing that inspired this book was my mother would take in girls who had been displaced by the civil war in colombia. and they would live in our house
and they would be our nannies and they would do maid's work. they would live with us and some of my earliest memories was listening to these women talk and talk, you know, tell us about their lives which were starkly different than what i was living. >> seth: and so, at a very young age, you became aware much in the way that the character in the book does of class and of you having more advantage than others. was that something you always thought you'd write about? >> it wasn't something that i always thought i would write about. but it was something that stayed with me as -- as a piece of knowledge that maybe not a lot of people had. and so, i felt an urgency when i started to write to address it, and one of the things that i -- that, you know, made me realize just the difference in the lives and the quality of life was that when we would go and visit my
family in the northeastern part of colombia, they would -- we would have dinner together and we would, you know, buy food and bring food with us. and i would hear my cousins say things like, "oh, now, we're eating like kings." there's so much food. and the food that we would bring with us would be just -- we just bought fried chicken. >> seth: so, you -- i want to ask about this as well because you obviously said a lot of you is in the character chula, which is the young girl. your parents, your family, were they the inspiration for your family in the book as well? >> yeah. >> seth: and were they excited or upset that you were about to put them in a novel? >> i was very lucky to have family members who are all very outgoing and they loved to, you know, hear people talk about them. so when i told them i'm writing a book about you, they were very excited, yes. [ light laughter ] >> seth: even though, you know, some of -- certainly the parents are not the most moral people in the book. did your parents appreciate that
was a fictionalized version? >> not so much. but i would call them, especially my mom, because i love the way that she reacts to things. i would call her and i would say, guess what? your character is having an affair now. and she -- in her best, you know -- [ speaking foreign language ] she would be like, "no, like, tell me everything." why, why did i do that? [ laughter ] >> seth: and your mother obviously spanish is her first language. she speaks some english. and you have noticed that her english is changing a bit based on the tv she's watching? >> yeah. my -- my brother-in-law was on a property brothers show and so she was -- my mother was staying with my sister and they would -- she would watch the show endlessly. and she started to watch all of these home improvement shows and she started to pick up english from that. so, you know, now when i bring her coffee, she'll be like, "it's my dream.
it's huge. i love it." [ laughter ] >> seth: and this is great, i mean, because, again, i found this book so engaging. it's like a wonderful book about how children see very scary things while they're happening. obviously, you know, it's happening during this really scary time in colombia. but also, this is a crazy real detail about your life. your mother ran a fortune telling business out of your attic? >> yeah. this is true. >> seth: and so what was that like? >> my -- so my father had just lost his job at the time. and so my mother started a fortune telling business in the attic. and she -- you know, one of my favorite past times is when i was young was to watch the people who came and went. and one, there was one woman who was -- she wore these stylish ponchos and she would always come and she was a complete mystery to us because she always asked about dates.
she wanted to know if a date was auspicious or inauspicious. and i had my own theory. i told my mom, she's probably a wedding planner. >> seth: oh, that would be a good way to ask. of course, you'd want to know that. >> and, you know, my mom, she thought maybe there is something there but she didn't quite want to ask because we needed the money. >> seth: right. >> and there was one time where she came back, the woman came back and she was very thankful. and she brought an envelope with tickets and a hotel stay all paid expenses in medellin and we begged my mother to take it. we were like, "you never take us anywhere." like, please, take us. you know, we'll never get to experience this again. we went to medellin and we were kind of followed around by the staff. and everything we did, you know, if i tried to take a sweater off, somebody would come and take it off for me and like
drape it on a chair. so we got increasingly suspicious. >> seth: yeah, that's -- this is not wedding behavior, yeah. >> and so, when we came back to bogata and my mother kind of asked her, "so -- but you're not a mule, are you?" and she kind of said it. >> seth: not a drug mule? >> yeah. not a drug mule, right? and she said it as a joke and the woman said, "no, that's -- people who work for me are though." [ light laughter ] >> seth: i'm like in charge of the drug mules. >> yeah. >> seth: and did that then make you feel a little guilty about taking the all expense paid trip to medellin? >> of course. yeah. and we found out that she worked for pablo escobar. and we were so terrified about receiving blood money that we just went to the church and we had a priest bless us with holy water. [ light laughter ] >> seth: well, obviously, that worked out because you're okay. the book is great. and thank you so much for being here. i really appreciate it. >> thank you so much.
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